Army to tighten rules on permissible tattoos

This guy wouldn't be considered as a new Army recruit under proposed rules limiting soldier tattoos.

U.S. Army soldiers will now have to restrict their tattoos to above the elbow, above the knee and below the neckline, according to proposed new rules.

WASHINGTON — The Army intends to tighten its restrictions on soldiers' tattoos.

Under a proposed rule change, new recruits would not be allowed tattoos visible below the elbow or knee or above the neckline. Current soldiers would be permitted to keep any tattoos not deemed racist, sexist or extremist.

The proposed change was described to soldiers in Afghanistan on Saturday by Sgt. Maj. of the Army Raymond Chandler, the top enlisted soldier. He said Army Secretary John McHugh favors the change but has not yet formally approved it.

Army tattoos: A proud soldier with what appear to be permissable tattoos under proposed new rules.Simon Willms Photo

A proud soldier with what appears to be permissible tattoos under proposed new rules.

Officials at Army headquarters at the Pentagon confirmed Tuesday that McHugh had not yet made the change final.

Chandler's remarks were first reported by the Stars and Stripes newspaper.


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